By Prince Osuagwu
The Chief Justice of Ni-geria and Chairman, Board of Governors, National Judicial Institute, NJI, Justice Walter Onnoghen, has challenged the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, to work closely with the judiciary on matters relating to disputes in telecommunications, in order to assist the judiciary to have better understanding of telecoms matters that are brought before the court.
He also said on the other hand, if empowered by law, NCC would be able to handle more complicated issues that have legal connotations.
Onnoghen at a workshop organised for judges on legal issues in telecommunications, sponsored by NCC and the NJI, also noted that the Commission’s 2003 Act has come of age and considering prevailing circumstances, needed to be reviewed.
Represented by Justice Mohammed Lawal Garba at the event, the CJN averred that the commission needs more legal powers to address issues arising from new technologies and practices that were not captured in the Act 15 years ago.
Meanwhile, the Director, Legal and Regulatory Services at NCC, Mrs. Yetunde Akinloye, in her presentation, revealed that the NCC Act 2003, is currently under review by the Senate and members of the House of Representatives.
She, however, agreed that the Act is out of tune with prevailing tech circumstances, adding that “the Act falls short of the legal power to address evolving issues in today’s telecom space like child online protection, electronic evidence in legal cases, multiple taxes, data protection laws, local content in telecommunications, call masking, among others.”
She was of the view that if the issues were addressed at the judiciary workshop and affected in the ongoing review of the NCC Act, it would enable NCC to act faster in addressing current issues bedevilling the telecoms sector.